Kanchipuram deserves its esteemed title as one of India’s seven holy cities, blessed with a plethora of divine temples located along the banks of River Vegavathi. It is also referred to as City of Thousand Temples and City of Gold, making it an attractive destination for many pilgrims. This captivating city was where Adi Shankara introduced his Advaita philosophy in ancient times. Just 75km from the state capital Chennai, Kanchipuram continues to be a top tourist spot for those seeking spiritual enlightenment on their sacred journey through India.Kanchipuram is home to a plethora of temples, boasting 108 Shaiva and 18 Vaishnava holy sites. Ekambareswarar Temple, Varadharaja Perumal Temple, Kailasnathar Temple and Kamakshi temple are particularly renowned within the city – each one offering its own unique experience for visitors.

Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu is a renowned tourist destination for its opulent ‘Kanchipuram sarees’ and resplendent temples. Tourists from all corners of the globe are drawn to Kanchi for its Hinduism roots or simply to admire the exquisite South Indian architecture.

This locale is renowned for its cultural and philosophical presence, making it a vital center in the contemporary world. Additionally, there are many alluring attractions to visit, such as the revered Kanchi Kamakshi Temple – home of Goddess Parvathi, Mahadeva’s consort. The historic Kailasanathar Temple also promises visitors an awe-inspiring experience with its captivating architecture.Towering over the town at a remarkable 40 acres, Ekambeshwarar Temple stands as a monument to the past. Dating back to Pallava period, this grand temple is renowned for its sheer size and beauty. Even in the evenings Kanchi Mutt holds captivating kutcheris (South Indian classical music concerts) that add further allure to this historic site.

The intricate and skillfully-crafted temples of the Vijayanagar period are some of India’s most iconic heritage sites. Notable examples include the awe-aspiring 192 feet (59 m) tall Ekamabaranath temple tower, as well as Varadaraja Swamy with its magnificent 1000-pillar hall.

The Kamakshi Amman temple is one of the most ancient temples in the city, and it is also the most famous out of all the temples. It is connected with Adi Shankara. According to legend, Kamakshi offered worship to a Shivaling made out of sand and as a result she gained Shiva’s hand in marriage. The temple area spans about 5 acres (2 hectares) and inside the sanctum there is a gold plated Vimana. Kamakshi herself is enshrined in the sitting posture called Parabramha Swaroopini within the temple, seated next to Bramha, Vishnu and Shiva – who together form the Hindu trinity.

The historic city of Kanchipuram has been famously referred to as ‘The Benares of the South’ by renowned poet Kalidasa. It is a city rich in culture, with origins tracing back to 2nd century BCE when it was thought to be part of the Dravida Kingdom mentioned in Mahabharata. Many great and powerful dynasties have held rule over Kanchipuram throughout its existence. As a part of Pallavas kingdom, they made significant contributions to the growth and architecture of the city – constructing roads and many now-famous temples like Kanchi Kailasanathar Temple and Varadharaja Perumal Temple.The city of Kanchipuram was initially under the Chola reign in 890, serving as their kingdom’s capital. In 1361, the Vijayanagaras defeated them and reigned until 1600 when it started to experience a period of turbulence with forces such as Golcondas, Bijapur, Marathas and Aurungzeb’s Mughal Empire taking turns to briefly seize control over it. Additionally, during the Carnatic Wars between British East India Company against French troops and Anglo Mysore wars from 18th century onwards this strategic site was an important battleground for both sides.

Situated 75 kilometres from Chennai and 277 kilometres from Bangalore, Kanchipuram is well-connected to the rest of the country by road, rail and transport services. The nearest domestic and international airports are located in Chennai.

By flight

Situated closest to Kanchipuram is the Chennai airport, where you can catch a bus or rent a car for your onward journey.

By road

Kanchipuram is conveniently located near many major south Indian cities, and can be easily accessed by road or bus.

By train

Kanchipuram is conveniently connected to the majority of south Indian cities via train, and there are even trains that depart from Chennai directly.

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